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[WATCH] Mario de Marco submits candidature for PN leadership

Mario de Marco throws hat in the ring, to face deputy leader Simon Busuttil for top post

jurgen
Jurgen Balzan
5 April 2013, 12:00am
Mario de Marco submitted his leadership nomination to outgoing PN secretary-general Paul Borg Olivier.
Mario de Marco submitted his leadership nomination to outgoing PN secretary-general Paul Borg Olivier.


Nationalist MP and former minister Mario de Marco announced his intention to contest the PN leadership post on Twitter and Facebook earlier today, becoming the fourth candidate in this race after Simon Busuttil, Francis Zammit Dimech and Ray Bugeja.



In a short comment to the press, De Marco said this contest was not only a choice between persons but "it is about uniting the people, it is an election which should open the party's doors wide open and welcome young people and who ever has ideas, energy and experience who are ready to give their contribution to the country and the party."

De Marco also pointed out that the 4 May election is about building bridges in a society, which is continuously changing, maturing and becoming modern. "We need to be the reflection of today's society and its needs and  we should not expect society to be the party's reflection."

The country thrives for positive politics over divisive politics, de Marco said, adding that the people were demanding a change in how politics is done. "People want less politics in their daily life but they want more effective politics."

He said the PN was going through a "delicate" process in which it will decide its future, and de Marco added, "the councillors should be given the widest choice possible reflecting the different potential in the party."

"This is not only a time to choose but a time to unite and it is important that after taking a decision everyone unites behind the chosen person."

The former tourism minister said that his experiences as a young party activist up to his ministerial roles in the last legislature "brought him close to various elements of the Maltese society."

"But above all I am a normal person, like all of you and I also understand that politics does not only belong to the people but we need politics for the people," de Marco said.

Despite being perceived by many as the natural choice to take the PN helm after its landslide defeat at the general election, De Marco had been coy regarding whether he would make the step and contest the election.

He was however among the forefront of those PN exponents who came forward to spell out their vision for the party's future.

In an opinion piece penned just a few days after the election result, de Marco delivered a post-mortem of the Nationalist Party election campaign that laid out a leadership-aspirant's vision for the party, and held up the electoral campaign that saw the PN losing to Labour by a landslide of 36,000 votes on Sunday as an example of "how not to run a campaign".

Among his observations and insights into how the party's shortcomings came together to deliver a defeat of historic proportions, de Marco's chief diagnosis was that the PN's campaign lacked vision for the future.
jurgen
Jurgen Balzan joined MaltaToday in 2011, specialising in politics, foreig...
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dgriscti - From the point of view of an uninvolved and neutral bystander, the problem is this. The leadership contest is on and there are really only two candidates who can hope to be elected. Dr Demarco who, yes I agree, was perhaps waiting in the wings and Dr Busuttil who I am sure is a genuine person and did the decent thing to come back to Malta to participate in a contest of which he already knew the outcome....However, sadly we only get one chance in life. Maybe it isn't fair but that's the way things go. The electorate aren't at all forgiving and whilst the LP would be delighted were Dr Busuttil elected, staunch PN supporters (the 44%) will be very angry and feel betrayed by the councillors and ex-PNs/floaters like myself will be extremely disappointed because whilst I did vote LP, I would not want to see them in government for more than ten years max and possibly less if I feel they haven't delivered or if they do not stick to their promises. Therefore, let us hope that the best man for the job wins because it would be very embarrassing if the PN lose by an even larger margin in the next election. I seem to recall that in 1992 the Nationalists increased their number of votes, so this is possible!
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Dragut, I'm afraid u got the wrong message. It is not against Mario. Far from it. I know him personally and he is an amiable person and has many qualities. I also happen to be a great admirer of his father who I consider to be perhaps Malta's greatest statesman. This has to do with his role as a former cabinet member. A huge majority booted that cabinet out, and the polls clearly showed that this would happen a long time ago. There may be some, like you, that decided late in the day. The polls clearly showed that that was not the norm. I think it is hardly sensible to elect a member of that former cabinet, being electorally the most unpopular one in history. Re MEPA, like it or not, he was responsible for it. That will obviously be used against him come next elections, if he is elected. On the other hand, simon made some naive mistakes in those 3 months, but he has no cabinet etc baggage, so I believe he is a better bet. I also think that his skills with civil society are fundamental for the PN in the next 5 years. I'm afraid I do not see that in the other candidates, and I think the delegates know that. Having said that, if Mario wins I wish him the best of luck.
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Joseph Borg
If Demarco is elected, will he have those two well known, but never mentioned advisers, behind his back ?
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From dgriscti's comments here and if I am not mistaken on other websites, it seems that he supports Dr Simon Busuttil for leader. This is fine as I hope we live in a democratic country where we are all entitled to express our own opinions. However, why rubbish Dr Demarco and try and insinuate that the wrongdoings at MEPA were Dr Demarco's fault? Even were this true, this is not the way to go about things and shows lack of respect and in-fighting within the same party. Good luck to Dr Demarco, even if you are not elected, you are the first choice of ex-PN voters who still care about the party they knew growing up in the 1980s and 1990s and who are greatly saddened to see what has become of the once mighty PN. And, dgriscti, most of the electorate had not decided a whole year before. In fact, I made up my mind to vote PL and not PN when Louis Grech replaced Dr Anglu Farrugia and most people could have been won round if the campaign had not been so divisive. At least Dr Demarco has understood that people no longer want these sort of politics but for us all to move forward as a united nation.
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Wednesday, November 14, 2012, 11:31 THE TIMES Updated: PN deputy leadership election: Two is company, three’s a crowd, de Marco And now? What about FOUR? What for?
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Mario says that the defeat was mainly because of a bad campaign. Polls clearly show otherwise, i.e. that the electorate had decided long before that. The real reason was the arrogance, insensitivity and inertia of the outgoing government when faced with the personal traumas so many citizens had to face because of MEPA etc etc. These traumas slowly but surely diminished the integrity of so many citizens, and they rebelled, and one cannot blame them. What did the outgoing cabinet do about it....zilc, despite the fact that the writing was clearly on the wall. 3 months out of the limelight before the elections does not change that, just as 3 months trying to clear up someone else's mess before the elections should not have a bearing on Simon Busuttil. Simon stuck his head out out of loyalty to try and salvage a mess left by the outgoing government....others who presided over that mess conveniently made themselves invisible, only to reappear in shining armour on the 'independent' media virtually the day after the elections. Sorry mate.....I'm not buying that!
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Mario's chief diagnosis for the massive defeat is that the PN's campaign lacked visionfor the future. Oh really....you don't say! As the polls clearly showed for a whole year before trhe elections, the electorate had decided a long time ago. You don't perhaps think that that is because of arrogance and insensitivity shown by the outgoing government and so many Authorities it controlled, the classic example being MEPA. The outgoing government knew about this and was warned about this many years ago, yet they wore their white gloves and blamed the civil service, amongst other things. I'm afraid that my recored show that Mario was a cabinet minister in these 5 years, and he was the man in charge of MEPA.
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Mario's chief diagnosis for the massive defeat is that the PN's campaign lacked visionfor the future. Oh really....you don't say! As the polls clearly showed for a whole year before trhe elections, the electorate had decided a long time ago. You don't perhaps think that that is because of arrogance and insensitivity shown by the outgoing government and so many Authorities it controlled, the classic example being MEPA. The outgoing government knew about this and was warned about this many years ago, yet they wore their white gloves and blamed the civil service, amongst other things. I'm afraid that my recored show that Mario was a cabinet minister in these 5 years, and he was the man in charge of MEPA.
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Nikki Petroni
Too little, too late! All you are aspiring to has already been promised and is being deliverede by Joseph Muscat, so not only are u playing catchup, but where is the added value for the citizen in joining your sinking ship, er i am bandwagon. ... You lot have only yourselves to blame: your arrogance and lack of sensitivity. You promised before each election and delivered less than the bare minimum! Now the boat has sailed and you are left behind with your ex-leader GONE-zi.
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Daniel Cassar Darien
Qeeghdin tinnutaw kif Joseph Muscat gab lill-prtenduri ghal kap tal-PN li jghidu l-istess kliem tieghu? Id-differenza hi li Joseph ghamel dak li qal bil-fatti, filwaqt li jidher li -kap li jmis tal-PN se jaghmel dan BISS BIL-kLIEM. Dan ghaliex se jkun l-istess mill-iskola l-antika tal-PN. All of the same, kif jghidu. Hag'ohra ta' min jghid hi li l-kopja QATT ma tista' tkun AHJAR MILL-ORIGINAL. Imma j'Alla joqorbu lejn ix-xewqa ta' Joseph Muscat u tana lkoll, li nkunu poplu wiehed b'wicc Malti. Nittama li wara li dawn in-nies mexxew kampanja biex juru li huma differenti, issa jindunaw li jekk il-politika ta' firda jgib biss disperazzjoni u falliment!
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Mario Spiteri
It is written on the wall Simon Busuttil will be leader and Mario Demarco his vice the new PN is going back to the 1977 way of manovers. Just stop this bull shit please and ensure to give this party to the people who deserve it.
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Yanika Chetcuti
Out of all the old posse, Mario and Chris would make the best tandem, backed by Bugeja as CEO.